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How to Use the Web Location API


Have you ever felt the requirement for a location tracker that would offer you the most accurate location of a user? If yes, then a web location API is an ideal find for you. A web location API, as can be well anticipated from the name, is employed for retrieving the user’s location. For instance, you can display the position of the user using a mapping API. Though, the geolocation API will only access your location if you authorize it to share it. A geolocation API is useful in many circumstances, let us dig deep into the details of how to use a web location API. 

A Brief Introduction to Geolocation API

A web location API restores a location and accuracy radius focused on information about cell towers and WiFi nodes that the mobile client can detect. When websites gather knowledge about the different geographical locations of the visitors, the information serves as an immensely helpful approach to enhancing user experience. 

With the help of this integration, adding numerous features to your application becomes way more convenient. For instance, an organization selling electrical equipment, with the help of a geo API will be easily able to suggest the nearest showroom where the customers can visit and buy the products. You might have already encountered many such instances where you had to provide your geographical location and were presented with innumerable buying options for your preferred brand. 

The process to Use the Locations API

By now, if you are interested in knowing how to use the geolocation API, then let’s get some knowledge about how to use it. 

The geolocation API can be retrieved through he navigator. geolocation object. If the object subsists, geolocation services are obtainable. You can examine the availability of geolocation API in the following way:

if (“geolocation” in navigator) {

  /* geolocation is available */

} else {

  /* geolocation IS NOT available */


Receiving the Present Position

For obtaining the user’s present location, you can opt for the getCurrentPosition() method. Through this, a request will be commenced for detecting the user’s position and also question the positioning hardware for retrieving updated information. Right when the positioning is captured, the defined callback function functions. In case of an unprecedented error, you have the option of a second callback function. Furthermore, the third is an optional parameter where you will be able to set the maximum age of the position returned, the time to halt for a request, and in case you want, high accuracy for the position. 

Noticing the Present Position

In case you notice a position data alteration, you can arrange a callback function which is called with that updated position information. This can be arranged by incorporating the watchPosition() function. This callback function is referred to multiple times enabling the browser to either update the location as you move or offer a more correct location. 

The watchPosition() approach retrieves an ID number that can be employed for recognizing the requested position watcher. This value is utilized together with the clearWatch() method to pause noticing the location. 

Streamlining the Response

Both getCurrentPosition() and watchPosition() admit a success callback, a substitutional error callback, and an optional options object. This object enables you to state whether to turn on high accuracy, the maximum age for the retrieved position value, and a timeout value that states the time length for the browser to attempt to secure the position data prior to its timing out. 

Defining a Position

The user’s location is illustrated by employing a GeolocationPosition object instance which comprises a GeolocationCoordinates object instance. 

The GeolocationPosition instance comprises two elements: a coords property containing GeolocationCoordinates instance, and a timestamp property containing a timestamp. The GeolocationCoordinates instance comprises different properties but the two most commonly utilized are longitude and latitude. 

Managing Errors

As you try out the error callback function when calling getCurrentPosition() or watchPosition(), you would be expected a GeolocationPositionError object instance as its first requisite. This object category comprises two properties – a code stating what error type has bounced back, and a human-readable message illustrating what exactly the error code means. 

Both HTML and JavaScript offer geolocation API usage. You can choose the one you prefer. Now that you have gained quite some knowledge about the usage of web location API, let us summarize all the factors:

  1. The web location API enables you to create location-based web applications
  2. The geolocation API lays emphasis on the longitude and latitude coordinate system
  3. Sharing of location information is handled by the end-user
  4. getCurrentPosition() enables you to catch user location
  5. watchPosition() enables you to observe user location
  6. The geo API can be integrated with mapping apps

The web location API is indeed one of the most beneficial elements in determining the user location which further assists in boosting sales. Just imagine the number of prospective audiences you’d gain when they will locate your service in the nearby area. 

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